O give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works (Psalm 105:1-2).
Looking back over my years as a Christian, I have observed many things regarding how people view the Christian life. The tendency to complicate living for God is one thing that has always concerned me.
As born again Christians we should be able to remember how simple it was to get saved in the first place. We believed in our hearts that Jesus is the only way to be saved. With our mouths we confessed this belief. We asked for forgiveness. We surrendered our lives into His care. That was it! He heard our prayers and He saved us. It wasn’t complicated at all.
Living the Christian life isn’t as complicated as we sometimes make it out to be. Psalm 105:1-2 points out three very basic ingredients with regard to living for God. Those three ingredients are prayer, worship and witness. Let us briefly look at each one.
Prayer is absolutely necessary. Notice the Psalmist wrote, “Call upon his name.” The Apostle Paul wrote this to Timothy: “I will that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.” Colossians 4:2 tells us, “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving.” Prayer is our direct communication with our Heavenly Father. To really know Him we have to communicate with Him. After all, it is a source of joy for us to know that He is listening to us.
Notice the words of the Psalmist: “Give thanks to the Lord. Sing to Him.” That sounds like worship to me. We worship Him for who He is- not just for what He does. Jesus said, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” Our worship must be sincere and heartfelt. Whether we are singing, praying or vocalizing our praise and thanks to God, we need to put our all into our worship.
Finally, we must look at our witness. Contrary to what we sometimes think, we do not have to be theologians to be witnesses. Again, hear the words of the psalmist: “Make known his deeds among the people. Talk of all his wondrous works.” What has the Lord done for us? There is no better way to witness than to simply let others know how good God has been to us and let them know God will do the same for them. We must also be careful that our actions coincide with our words. Matthew 5:16 says, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
So, why make the Christian life complicated? God does not want us to be stressed out. God wants us to live lives that are full of His love, his peace and His joy. Let us keep this as basic as it is intended to be.
Dave Snyder is an Ordained Bishop with the Church of God – Cleveland, Tennessee. Before entering the ministry on a full-time basis, he was a school teacher. He also coached middle school basketball for eight years.
Dave and his wife, Sara, have two children — Craig and Karen. They also have one ten year old granddaughter — Breanna.
Dave and Sara pastored in West Virginia for thirty-six years. Sara is now retired from the banking industry, and Dave is retired from pastoring. However, Dave currently serves as prison Chaplain for the West Virginia Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Writing essays, articles, and devotionals is a real passion for Dave. He also enjoys playing musical instruments and singing.